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Jepson Interchange (more information)
©Copyright 1993 by the Regents of the University of California

  • Up-to-date information about California vascular plants is available from the Jepson eFlora.



David J. Keil, Family Editor and author, except as specified

Annual to tree
Leaves basal or cauline, alternate to whorled, simple to compound
Inflorescence: 1° inflorescence a head, each resembling a flower, 1–many, generally arrayed in cymes, generally subtended by ± calyx-like involucre; flowers 1–many per head
Flowers bisexual, unisexual, or sterile, ± small, of several types; calyx 0 or modified into pappus of bristles, scales, or awns, which is generally persistent in fruit; corolla radial or bilateral (rarely 0), lobes generally (0)4–5; stamens 4–5, anthers generally fused into cylinder around style, often appendaged at tips, bases, or both, filaments generally free, generally attached to corolla near throat; pistil 1, ovary inferior, 1-chambered, 1-seeded, style 1, branches 2, generally hair-tufted at tip, stigmas 2, generally on inside of style branches
Fruit: achene, cylindric to ovoid, generally deciduous with pappus attached
Genera in family: ± 1300 genera, 21,000 species (largest family of dicots): worldwide. Largest family in CA. Also see tribal key to CA genera: Strother 1997 Madroño 44(1):1–28. See glossary p. 25 for illustrations of general family characteristics.



Annual, perennial herb, shrubs, generally scented
Stems erect
Leaves pinnately divided or compound in CA, opposite below, opposite or alternate above, sessile or petioled, dotted with embedded oil glands
Inflorescence: heads generally radiate, small to large and showy, peduncled, solitary or in terminal, leafy cymes; involucre cylindric to bell-shaped; phyllaries in 1 series, all equal, fused, gland-dotted; receptacle naked
Ray flowers (0)1–many; corollas white to yellow, orange, or brown; style tips long, tapered
Disk flowers 3–many; corollas yellow to orange
Fruit cylindric; pappus of scales, sometimes with 1 or more awns
Species in genus: ± 50 species: North America., South America. ± TOXIC to root-parasite nematodes.


T. minuta L.

Annual 2–10 dm, erect, glabrous
Leaves: leaflets serrate or dentate
Inflorescence: heads many in terminal cymes; peduncles 5–5.5 mm, slender; involucre 7–10 mm, narrowly cylindric; phyllaries 3–5, not splitting apart
Ray flowers 1–3; corollas pale yellow; ligules 1–2 mm, inconspicuous
Disk flowers 3–5; corollas 3–4 mm, yellow
Fruit 4.5–7 mm; pappus of 1–2 acuminate scales (each 2–3 mm) and 3–5 ovate to lanceolate scales (each 0.5–1 mm)
Chromosomes: 2n=24
Ecology: Disturbed places
Elevation: < 1000 m.
Bioregional distribution: s Sierra Nevada Foothills, s San Joaquin Valley (especially Tulare Co.), San Francisco Bay Area, s South Coast Ranges, w Western Transverse Ranges
Distribution outside California: native to w S.America
Weedy. Sometimes cultivated. May cause contact dermatitis in susceptible individuals.

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